Features Research Archives

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1950 Ad Promoting a New Willys-Overland Dealer

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

This December 29, 1950, ad in the Evening Star promoted Sligo Motors, Inc, a new Willys-Overland dealer. Note the Willys-Overland service sign in the lower left corner. I don’t think I’ve seen that one.

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Jerry Can Holder Patent

• CATEGORIES: Features

J.F. Evans filed a patent for holding and locking Jerry cans on October 27, 1959. The objectives were to create a simple, accessible, yet secure manner of carrying a water or gas container.

1959-10-27-jerry-can-holder-patent

 
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Some Assembly Required

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: .

Over the last couple of days I’ve been sorting through Rusty’s parts and putting it back together so its easier to ship (It sold this week). It almost looks like a real jeep again. I started with the bare frame that Ann and I cleaned up prior to the Alaska trip in 2017.

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I thought it would be easiest if I reinstalled the engine and tranny and gas tank for transport.IMG_9633

With the powertrain installed, the body and front clip went together pretty easily. The parts have been sorted and boxed. It’s just about ready to go. IMG_9635

 
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‘Jeep’ Badge T-Shirts

• CATEGORIES: Features

Tom wanted to have some t-shirts made with the design below on it. He’s wondering if anyone else would like some as well?

The price is $20 per shirt plus USPS priority shipping of $7.35 (shipping is the same for one or two shirts $27.35 or $47.35 for two shirts). If you are interested, you can either comment below or email Tom at Lsi24 @ msn.com (remove the spaces around the @). He expects to have about 40 available for sale.

The t-shirts would be a white Hanes Beefy shirt that is 100% cotton with a pocket. The vintage logos are based on the 1950 ‘jeep badge’ logo seen in a few ads. He’s only making a few and doesn’t plan on selling them anywhere else. The below are mock ups, so they aren’t quite exactly what you’ll get.

jeep-shirt-badge-front-back

 
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1949 Ad for the ‘Jeep’ Panel Delivery Wagon

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

This ad appeared in the Marion Progress out of North Carolina on February 10, 1949.

1949-02-10-marion-progress-panel-delivery-pg5

 
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CJ-5 VIN Sticker Reproductions $50

• CATEGORIES: Features

Bear Creek has now stopped producing reproduction Jeep VIN stickers for jeeps 1969-1975. To fill that gap, Maury has developed templates and a printing process capable of reproducing them. If you’d have questions or would like to order a VIN sticker, you can contact Maury through early CJ-5 site or contact him directly at snoopy2x @ gmail.com (there are spaces around the @ to reduce spamming).

You can learn more about what he’s doing and how the pricing works here:

http://www.earlycj5.com/xf_cj5/index.php?threads/1969-to-1971-jeep-vin-sticker-reproduction-artwork.135815/#post-1473936

Here’s an example of a new sticker (on the left) overlaid with the original sticker (on the right).

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Here’s another example of an old sticker (top) and a new sticker (bottom). cj5-vin-stickers-reproductions

 
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Willys Makes Sense Campaign

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

UPDATE: I ran across another large Willys Makes Sense ad in the February 13, 1951, issue of the Evening Star newspaper that differed from the others.

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Original Post: May 21, 2019:

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In 1950, Willys-Overland launched a Willys Makes Sense advertising campaign. Unlike past campaigns, such as the 1948 City and City ads, which were about encouraging the sales of wagons and positioning the wagon as a luxury vehicle, the Willys Makes Sense appears to have been organized to re-imagine how the public should view the brand.

Before I get too deeply into this, I’d like to note that the way I’d prefer to write this article is to document specific reasons behind Willys-Overland’s decision to make such a big change. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to enough financial material as I’d like (especially annual reports). So, conjecture and theory will have to do for now.

BACKGROUND: After WWII, pent up demand meant lots of sales for automakers. That could explain, in part, why post-war sales were pretty good for Willys-Overland. For example, sales increased from almost 79,000 jeeps in 1946 to 159,000 jeeps in 1948. But, in 1949, sales plunged to almost half, coming in at 86,000. I don’t have details into why sales dropped so much, but likely parts or material shortages or labor disputes could have had an impact. Certainly, the recession of late 1948 – late 1949 didn’t help sales at all!

Future sales might not have looked too good for 1950 and beyond either. As of 1950 the US produced 76% of automobiles, but given the post-war rebuilding/resurging of industry world-wide, I expect automakers must have realized that international competition would return soon (by 1955 US market share would drop to 67%). This may have stimulated management to clean up their branding as soon as possible to protect against increasing competition (remember that Willys-Overland had expected to sell 25% of their autos internationally, based on the 1946 Fortunate Magazine article).

Another issue Willys-Overland was facing was that going into 1950 the company still didn’t have a registered trademark for the term JEEP (wouldn’t get it until June of 1950). Added to that, the company was not only producing 4WD 1/4 ton jeeps, trucks, and wagons, but also 2WD trucks, wagons, Jeepsters, and an upcoming automobile. Such a portfolio of non-4WD vehicles must have concerned management that it wasn’t just a “jeep” company; so the challenge of how the company should represent itself to dealers and consumers had to have become an issue.

Finally, in a similar vein, up until 1950, the company had been positioning itself as the ‘Jeep’ company, with ads that emphasized the Universal ‘Jeep’, the ‘Jeep’ Truck and the ‘Jeep’ Wagon. Perhaps with the introduction of the Jeepster (note that the company did not call it the ‘Jeep’ Jeepster nor was there any ‘Jeep’ branding on the introductory brochure), the branding issue must have really came to a head. Because of the entrenched nature of Willys-Overland’s efforts to become ‘Jeep’, management may have felt that a company-wide retooling of the  company’s branding was in order.

Perhaps one, two, or all of these issues resulted in the 1950 rebrand of the company as a WILLYS manufacturer with a wide range of 2WD and 4WD vehicles for sale. (For a look back at 1952, see Derek’s post “When the CJ-3B Was New“).

NON-JEEP BRANDED ADS: 

Willys-Overland began 1950 with an ad that felt similar to past ads, but excluded the ‘Jeep’ brand. For example, in January of 1950 Willys published this ad in the Saturday Evening Post. Note the reference to ‘Jeep’ has been replaced with a small ‘Jeep’ badge.

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January 07, 1950, ad in the Saturday Evening Post

As did Colliers Magazine on January 21, 1950:

1950-01-21-colliers-4-wheel-drive-pg14-color

In March of 1950, Willys-Overland published an issue of Salesbuilder. Like the name indicates, it was a magazine produced to help educate the sales force. There’s no evidence of ‘Jeep’ anywhere on any of the pages (apparently, I haven’t published either of my 1950 Salesbuilder magazines … that will happen in the next few days). 

By April 1950, the ‘Jeep’ badge and brand was gone from magazine ads altogether. This was especially noticeable on the introduction of the Willys Hurricane engine, as that power plant would be installed in upcoming 4WD jeeps as well as the 2WD vehicles.

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April 22, 1950, issue of the Saturday Evening Post

Even the truck ads had the ‘Jeep’ Truck branding removed:

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May 06, 1950, issue of the Saturday Evening Post

So, even before Willys-Overland launched its Willys Makes Sense campaign, the company had begun shifting its advertising away from ‘Jeep’ and toward WILLYS.

WILLYS MAKES SENSE:

The earliest documents I can find for the Willys Make Sense campaign were dealer-related training documents printed in June of 1950. Throughout these documents you’d have to search to find ‘Jeep” anywhere.This first one

1951-willys-makes-sense-sales-brochure0

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Postcard of Holland with Soldiers and Jeep on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Postcards

This seems like an odd postcard, but maybe I’m missing something?

View all the information on eBay

“WW2 – LIBERATION OF HOLLAND – SOLDIERS IN A JEEP – BY VAN DER WOUDE”

soldiers-jeep-holland-postcard1

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Dinky Jeep and Champ Surrey, BC, Canada $75

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

Jon share this ad of an aspiring music student selling these Dinky toys. This is the closest I want to come to owning an Austin Champ again!

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/2344965485825787/

dinky-toys-champ-jeep1 dinky-toys-champ-jeep2 dinky-toys-champ-jeep3 dinky-toys-champ-jeep4

 
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Salesbuilder Magazines

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features • TAGS: .

Willys-Overland began publishing the Salesbuilder magazines in July of 1948 with the announcement of the Jeepster. The Salesbuilder supplanted the W-O Sales News magazine. According to a small blurb on Google (I can’t read the whole reference), the Salesbuilder was part fo the effort to push the Jeepster.

I own a couple of Salesbuilder magazines, but those are the only ones I’ve seen. Below is a series of covers that I’ve been able to document so far. I’d like to find more.

As far as I know, Salesbuilder issues were published between July of 1948 and as late as August of 1951. By early 1954 (possibly January), Kaiser Willys had shuttered the magazine format for a newspaper format (see the March 1954, volume 1, issue 2 at the bottom of this post).

July 1948:

1948-07-salesbuilder-jeepster-cover

1948-07-salesbuilder-jeepster-pgs

March 03, 1950:

1950-03-salesbuilder-cover-front-lores

November 1950:

1950-10-salesbuilder-magazine-cover

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Frédéric’s Ma Jeep Toy Collection

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

Frédéric shared some pics of his “Ma Jeep” toy collection. He’s even got the original box. That’s a neat set!
ma-jeep-france-collection1 ma-jeep-france-collection2 ma-jeep-france-collection3

ma-jeep-france-collection4

 
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1949 Newspaper Ad for the CJ-3A

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Old News Articles

This newspaper was featured in the August 11, 1949, issue of the North Carolina Marion Progress Newspaper. Bristol’s Auto Service published several jeep-related ads, including this one.

1949-08-11-marion-progress-jeep-all-year-ad-pg3

 
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1957 Photo of M-38A1s in Barstow, CA on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

That’s a lot of M-38A1s!

View all the information on eBay

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1957-03-29-m38a1s-barstow-press-photo2

“1957 Press Photo Senior Sergeant Jack McCallister, Army jeeps, Barstow, CA. This is an original press photo. Trucks – United States. And imagine your problem trying to locate your parked car in this jungle of jeeps which stretches across desert sands at the Marine Corps Supply Center at Barstow, California. However, the Marine Corps says it has a filing system which helps locate any one jeep in jig time. The Marine in jeep at center is Senior Sergeant Jack McCallister. Photo measures 10 x 8.25 inches. Photo is dated 3-22-1957.”

 
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Mobile Cinema Unit Photos

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images • TAGS: .

UPDATE: Modeler builder Frederic Dete plans to create a model of this Mobile Cinema jeep and trailer. He’d like to make contact with David, but I no longer have his email. If he could contact me, I’ll put you in touch with Frederic.

Original Post  Apr 27, 2013: David was going through his father’s items and discovered photos of his father’s Mobile Cinema Unit in New Guinea.

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1956 Patent for Endless Track Vehicle

• CATEGORIES: Documents, Features • TAGS: .

This patent application used a jeep to demonstrated how the endless track system would work on a vehicle not designed specifically for tracks. The patent was filed January 13, 1955.

According to inventor Fritz Riemerschmid, “Numerous constructions of the track! laying or crawler type have heretofore been proposed, but in all of these known cases special-type vehicles are involved, the construction of which either prohibits or renders extremely difficult the use of the vehicle under normal road and travel conditions.

Accordingly it is one of the main objects of the present invention to provide a crawler-type tracklaying undercarriage for automotive vehicles which, while being particularly suitable for travel over snow-covered terrain, can be quickly and easily substituted for the standard wheels of the vehicle. It is another object of the invention to provide a construction of the type indicated in which, except for the removal of the said standard wheels from the vehicle, requires no structural changes to be made in a given vehicle. Thus, the invention renders it possible, whenever it may be desired, to provide an automotive vehicle of any given type with a tracklaying mechanism which takes the place of the standard wheels on which the said vehicle normally travels.”

1955-01-13-patent-endless-track-riemerschmid1

1955-01-13-patent-endless-track-riemerschmid2

 
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1943 Ever Ready Ad with Jeep

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

This ad was featured in the February 06, 1943, issue of the Saturday Evening Post, page 59.

1943-02-06-sat-evening-post-everready-ad-pg59

 
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Philippos Jeep Models

• CATEGORIES: Features, Models

A French reader and modeler named Frederic turned me onto a Greek modeler named Philippos Ioannou who has created a number of beautiful jeep models based on historic photos (he builds non-jeep models, too). You can see many of his models on Facebook or on his blog.

Here are a few of his works.

  1. Walliy Cohn “Jeep King” jeep-sedan:
    wall-cohn-jeep-model-philippos wally_cohn_jeep_king2
  2. Target Practice Jeep:
    target-practice-mb-philippos target-practice-mb-philippos-photo
  3. Welding Truck:cj2a-truck-philippos cj2a-truck-welding-philippos-photo
  4. Note the original photo at the base of the model:
    jeep-dump-bed-with-old-photo
  5. Looks like an efficient jeep/trailer set up.

    mb-custom-trailer-philipposmb-custom-trailer-philippos-photo
  6. I didn’t see an original photo for this model, but still it’s a neat one:
    mb-bucket-model-philippos
 
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Odd Bakelite Key Chain on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features

Maury spotted this odd key chain. It looks to be Willys Aero related, making it from the early 1950s.

View all the information on eBay

“Rare Vtg Orig Willys Jeep Keychain Orange Bakelite Logo 40s 50s . Condition is Used.”

willys-bakelight-key-chain

 
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1972 Article on the PNW4WDA and the Boys Scouts

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine

This April of 1972 article in Boy’s Life Magazine tells the story of the Boys Scouts work project on the Naches Trail in the Cascade Mountains just north of Mt. Rainier in conjunction with the Pacific Northwest Four-Wheel-Drive Association. I was not there (that I remember), but our club, the Wandering Willys, including my father, was there to help ferry the Boy Scouts to the Naches Trail.

You can read the article online here

1972-04-boys-life-mag-stgeorge-trek-boy-scouts1 1972-04-boys-life-mag-stgeorge-trek-boy-scouts2 1972-04-boys-life-mag-stgeorge-trek-boy-scouts3

 
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Cool Willys/Kasier/Jeep Magnets

• CATEGORIES: Features

Over the past couple years I’ve been the beneficiary of some custom magnets created by Maury. I figured it was about time I shared them. I keep them on both sides of a metal bookshelf, but moved them to one side for the photo. Many thanks Maury!

magnets2-lores

 
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1943 International Nickel Ad with Jeeps on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

This is a an ad I don’t think I’ve seen. This Adolph Treidler illustration was published in the April 25, 1943, issue of Time Magazine.

View all the information on eBay

“This is an original 1943 print ad for International Nickel! It measures approximately 11″ x 8” overall, has no tears or stains, comes from a dry, high-altitude, smoke-free environment, and is strictly graded

1943-04-25-time-magazine-nickel-company-jeeps-ad

 
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Bernd and His CJ-5 Are Back to Work

• CATEGORIES: Features

It’s springtime in Austria. Bernd and his CJ-5 are back to work.

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“My jeep helped prepare for a classic vehicle get-together (see links below). Today, I moved a narrow gauge railroad switch for the event. On my way, the traffic police pulled me and the jeep aside. Fortunately, they found nothing amiss, so I left without a ticket.”

See some links about the yearly event:

http://www.feuerwehr-mellau.at/cms/

http://www.feuerwehr-mellau.at/cms/index.php/chronik/fotogalerie/veranstaltungen-sonstiges/2017/2017-05-20-oldtimertreffen-2017

 
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CJ-3A TOY w/ Trailer Madras, OR $1200

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

UPDATE:  Still Available. I last show it was listed for sale in Madras in 2009.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/847560688954992/?ref=messenger_share

“One of a kind Jeep pedal car. (large enough for a adult to ride ) custom hand built, extra heavy duty double wall construction . have to see to appreciate the craftsmanship and detail in construction. would make a great project to motorize ”

toy-jeep-trailer-madras

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March 1950 Issue of Sales Builder

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

I’d won this a few years ago on eBay, but never got this posted. The scans are not the best, but I’ll have to wait until later to redo them.

1950-03-salesbuilder-cover-front-lores

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Wood Toy Possible Kempro Kit? on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Models, toys

This toy is about 8″ long. Seller thinks it might be a Kempro Kit toy.

View all the information on eBay

“Here is a nice sturdy toy car. Unknown maker. Quite possibly was a Kempro Co kit.
It is well made, and has been played with. I love Jeeps and have had a few. This sat on my desk at the shop. Unpacking some boxes the other day, I came across it again.
It shows some signs of age, but otherwise is in very good condition. Nice hardwoods used. ”

wood-toy-car-possibly-kempro1 wood-toy-car-possibly-kempro5 wood-toy-car-possibly-kempro6 wood-toy-car-possibly-kempro7 wood-toy-car-possibly-kempro8